After losing to Balzan in their last outing, a goal by Clebinho and a brace by Alvaro Silva Branquinho enabled Tarxien Rainbows to return to winning ways as they defeated Birkirkara 3-1.
Although the Stripes may have held the initiative early in the game, two goals in eight minutes by Clebinho and Alvaro Silva gave Clive Mizzi’s side a two-goal lead although In the second half, Birkirkara timidly tried to react but it was not enough to earn something from the game with the Rainbows delivering the killer blow on the 90th. For Birkirkara, this was the second defeat in four matches.
Birkirkara lacked once again Ryan Camenzuli and Gareth Sciberras with coach Paul Zammit making no changes to the team which defeated Mosta 2-0 last week. Tarxien, on the other hand, had five changes as Jonathan Debono, Clebinho, Alvaro Silva Branquinho, Matthew Tabone and Ryan Sammut replaced Sean Cini, Manuel Caruana, Jorge Santos SiIlva, Kane Farrugia and the suspended Carlos Menendez Hevia.
The Stripes had the first attempt at goal with Rafael Ledesma testing Jonathan Debono from a corner with the Tarxien custodian turning the ball into another corner on the 3rd minute.
However Tarxien managed to take the lead on 25 minutes when off a perfect pass by Wesley Pipico from the left, Cleber Barbosa Viana hit low past goalkeeper Justin Haber.
Eight minutes later, the Rainbows doubled the score thanks to Alvaro Andre Rodrigues Silva who slotted the ball past the Birkirkara custodian when served by Clebinho from the right.
Birkirkara pulled one back on 35 minutes when off a cross by Zach Muscat from the left, Ellinton Antonio Costa Morais’ first time effort beat goalkeeper Jonathan Debono.
The Stripes went close to equalising three minutes in the second half when a Matheus Bissi effort was partially saved by Debono and off the rebound, Eliandro’s diagonal shot from the left ended just wide. Tarxien replied with a freekick by Wesley Pipico ending slightly high on 53 minutes. In a counter-attack for Birkirkara, a cross shot by Rafael Ledesma was saved with particular difficulty by Debono less than a minute later.
Tarxien sealed the issue on the 90th when in a swift counter-attack, Alvaro Silva advanced on the left before
TARXIEN Jonathan Debono, Owen Bugeja, Alvaro Andre Rodrigues Silva (92′ Manuel Xerri), Cleber Barbosa Viana (90+4′ Kane Paul Farrugia), Triston Caruana, Firas Aboulezz, Wesley Lima Silva, Ryan Sammut, Alex Cini, Matthew Tabone (69′ Jorge Santos Silva), Alessandro Lopes Pereira.
Subs not used: Sean Cini, Steve Sadowski, Luke Zahra, Luke Aquilina.
Coach: Clive Mizzi
B’KARA Justin Haber, Matheus Bissi da Silva, Nikola Vukanac, Eliandro dos Santos Gonzaga (75′ Kurt Zammit), Rafael Pompeo Rodrigues Ledesma, Ellinton Antonio Costa Morais (90′ Antoine Borg), Paul Fenech, Zach Muscat, Ryan Scicluna, Edward Herrera (61′ Leighton Grech), Edmond Agius.
Subs not used: Ini Etim Akpan, Alejandro Mendoza Corujo, Andrea Curmi, Dylan Aquilina.
Referee: Mario Apap
Assistant Referees: Roberto Vella, Peter Abela
Fourth Official: Andre Arciola
Yellow Cards: Sammut, Aboulezz, Bugeja
Scorers: 25′ Cleber Barbosa Viana (T); 33′ Alvaro Andre Rodrigues Silva (T); 35′ Ellinton Antonio Costa Morais (B); 90; Alvaro Andre Rodrigues Silva (T)
BOV Player of the Match: Cleber Barbosa Viana
At the Victor Tedesco Stadium, Sliema Wanderers registered a second consecutive win, defeating Zebbug Rangers 1-0.
With Alex Muscat still ruled out injured, Sliema coach Alfonso Greco maintained faith in the same eleven players who had started the last game against Pietà. On the other hand, Jesmond Zammit made changes from the team which lost 0-4 to Hibernians as Jeffrey Farrugia, Jacob Borg, Matthew Gauci and Mauricio Britto replaced Fabricio Rapchan, Jonathan Xerri, Ratko Mandic and John Nwoba in the starting line-up.
Ironically, Zebbug could have taken the lead on the 15th minute when Matthew Bartolo served Mauricio Britto but the latter’s effort hit the upright.
Four minutes later, Sliema took the lead when following a good move between Gnabouyou, Barbetti and Mangiacasale, the Italian midfielder sent Mark Scerri through who slotted the ball past the Zebbug goalkeeper.
During the second half, Zebbug went in search of the equaliser but a Matias Muchardi freekick was parried by Glenn Zammit on 61 minutes and four minutes later, a good attempt by Mauricio Britto was neutralised by the Sliema goalkeeper.
SLIEMA Glenn Zammit, Luca Martinelli (85’ Iousef Meli), John Mintoff, Mark Scerri, Michael Mifsud, Andrea Pisanu (89’ Peter Xuereb), Clifford Gatt Baldacchino, Fabio Mangiacasale, Guy Gnabouyou (28’ Filippo Talato), Paltemio Barbetti, Stefano Bianciardi
Subs not used: Daniel Balzan, Axl Xuereb, Trevor Cilia, Aiden Jake Friggieri
ZEBBUG Jeffrey Farrugia, Matthew Gauci (81’ Miguel Ciantar), Clifford Gauci, Javier Diaz Serrano, Jacob Borg, Matias Muchardi, Carlo Gordon Monti, Matthew Bartolo (76’ Ratko Mandic), Yessous Camilleri, Mauricio Rodrigues Britto, Bojan Mamic (67’ John Nwoba).
Subs not used: Luke Pace, Thomas Paris, Lee Galea, Lee James Agius.
Referee: Marco Borg
Assistant Referees: Ingmar Spiteri, Sammy Attard
Fourth Official: Adrian Azzopardi
Yellow Cards: Pisani, Mifsud, Barbetti, Bartolo, Monti, C. Gauci, Mangiacasale, Zammit
Scorers: 19’ Mark Scerri
BOV Player of the Match: Mark Scerri